Retired FDA officials are promoting Generic Drugs in innovative ways

For the success of the mission, we will invite medical professionals who are not interested in money-making.

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Last Updated on November 19, 2021 by The Health Master

Retired drug regulatory officers in West Bengal along with socially committed NGOs and IPA, are adopting new strategies to promote the use of generic drugs under the central campaign, Pradhan Mantri Bhartiya Jan Aushadhi Pariyojana (PMBJP).

As part of the strategy, the campaigners will form a unit of the global organization, Health Action International (HAI), to promote generic drugs under its banner with the slogan, ‘Access to Medicines for All”.

For the success of the mission, we will invite medical professionals who are not interested in money-making.

Doctors who are not interested in promoting brands of major companies will be encouraged to motivate the people for generic drug use,” said a senior officer who just retired from service and initiated the project.

The campaigners will seek the support of the Indian Pharmaceutical Association (IPA) and all stakeholders in pharmacy and healthcare to strengthen their activities across the length and breadth of West Bengal. In addition to giving awareness to the common people about generic medicines, doctors at government and private hospitals will also be encouraged to promote generics.

As per their strategy, the campaigners will expand their activities to all the villages in every district, for which, separate district unit committees will be formed, associated with social organizations working in each district.

Ultimate objective of the generic drug promotional programme is to make available all kinds of drugs at affordable rates for the poor people in the society.

The centre of operations of the programme will be in village areas with focus on the medical needs of the poor and the downtrodden, says Dr. C. Subhash Mandal, a retired regulatory officer and health activist in Kolkata.

“We have no politics, but we want to support the promotion of generic medicines for the benefit of the poor people in the state. Jan Aushadhi Kendras are selling good quality generic products and there is no compromise on their part as far as quality is concerned.

Our mission is to make all people accessible to generic medicines which have to be supplied through government hospitals also. Along with good quality generic supply, the government also needs a stringent generic procurement system.

Initially the doctors are to be educated or sensitized about the use of generics and all doubts about it need to be removed. We want to take the prescribers into confidence first before going to the public,” Dr Mandal told.

He said secondary importance is given to the extension of healthcare services to the rural areas where the poor and the downtrodden live. Many of them are unable to access quality healthcare from hospitals and do not take medications for many reasons.

Private institutions will be approached to provide their services to the village population at affordable rates and with the support of local bodies and NGOs, medicines will be supplied to the needy patients, Dr Mandal elaborated.

Dr C Subhash Mandal was the Deputy Drugs Controller of the State Drugs Control Department and now holds the post of Chairman of the Regulatory Division of the Indian Pharmaceutical Association. He brings out a monthly online bulletin for WB IPA covering discovery and the technical aspects of drug making.

According to information received from the drug control department, the number of Jan Aushadhi stores in West Bengal is only 177.

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